Forky Friday: 4/19/13

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Today is an especially somber day, and I’m feeling a bit conflicted about posting a Forky Friday. I’m doing it because I made a promise to stay on schedule, but I totally understand if you want to skip today’s post and keep your eyeballs on Twitter instead. Admittedly, I was riveted by the rapid-fire #breaking tweets that were populating my feed last night.

If you’re looking for a bit of distraction from the heavy news of the moment, here’s what’s in store: An in-depth article about one of my favorite rancher, cool videos featuring spicy rabbit heads, coconuts, and amazing food art. Plus, you’ll get a peek at a couple of new Paleo cookbooks on my crowded kitchen bookshelf.

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Ready? Come along, friends.

  • Last weekend when I attended the annual IACP conference in San Francisco, I spent a lot of time eating across the street at the Ferry Building. Day after day, I queued up at Prather Ranch’s American Eatery and ordered a hearty, bun-less Green Goddess Burger (adorned with avocado relish, cheddar cheese & an over easy egg) with added bacon. My lucky husband works a block away, so he’s always raving about their burgers, too. Read about how the folks at Prather Ranch are doing it right — and the “it” includes humane slaughtering practices — in this article in Modern Farmer.
  • How many of you are adventurous enough to chomp on some spicy rabbit heads? If so, a trip to China may be up your alley. Read about it here or watch this video:

  • I’ll admit it: I’m guilty of taking coconuts for granted. After watching the video below, I have a much greater appreciation for the mighty coconut:

  • I’m totally smitten with artist Hong Yi’s amazing food art. Plus, she’s super adorable herself. (Thanks for the tip, Morten!)

What’s new on my crowded kitchen bookcase? Two new Paleo cookbooks: Bill & Hayley’s gorgeous entertaining tome, Gather, and Juli Bauer’s fun and casual OMG. Is That Paleo?! Both books are exactly what you’d expect from these awesome bloggers.

(Full disclosure: I’m friends with Bill, Hayley, and Juli, but these opinions are my own, as always.)

Gather includes 16 elegant menus featuring fabulous food that’ll delight even your pickiest guests. Bill and Hayley shot the Easter menu at our house last fall, and it was an honor to have them cooking and shooting in my kitchen. That meal was super-memorable and I’m excited that I can recreate it for my family and friends. Seriously, the Meyer lemon tart and sweet potato souffle were so, so good.

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The best thing about Gather? It gives me a game plan on how to attack the daunting task of throwing a dinner party, including when to tackle each step and how to decorate the table. I pride myself on being the anti-Sandra Lee, but the real reason is that I’m terrible at party planning.

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As soon as my slew of nightshifts are over on Wednesday, the boys and I are gonna cook our way through this book.

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Juli’s new cookbook is exactly like her blog — refreshingly funny, spunky, and filled with simple yet delicious dishes. When Juli announced that she was working on a cookbook, I preordered a copy right away.

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I love Juli’s relaxed and positive attitude — she encourages folks to have fun in the kitchen and to aim for deliciousness, not pretentiousness.

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As much as I love reading her recipes and funny anecdotes on the interwebs, I definitely prefer having all of Juli’s greatest hits (and 30 new recipes!) in a physical cookbook that I can flip through to find inspiration.

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Now if only I could cook all afternoon, instead of sleeping (and anxiously scanning the news). Remember to hug somebody today.


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